UUCMP Artist: Craig Lovell

“Journey to the Mystic East”
July 28 – September 24, 2023

Photographing indigenous cultures has been a lifelong passion of mine. The advent of modern technology and globalization has created rapid changes in every culture on the planet including those presented here which include Tibet, Nepal, Burma, India and Bali. The Buddhism and Hinduism practiced in these countries help to maintain their historical traditions as they transition into the modern world.

I have been photographing in the Himalayas and Southeast Asia for the past 38 years and have witnessed rapid change. Many of the images presented here could not be captured today and are now part of the historical record. For example, the yaks crossing the Lar Geh pass in Tibet are carrying salt in hand loomed sacks which is no longer a form of livelihood in Tibet. My goal is to make the world more harmonious by showing the common humanity amongst all people.

In recent times, the Dalai Lama and other teachers have brought Buddhism to the West for the benefit of all sentient beings. Padmasambhava, the saint who brought Buddhism to Tibet in the seventh century, predicted this: “When the iron bird flies and the horse runs on wheels, the Tibetan people will be scattered like ants across the face of the earth, and Dharma will come to the land of the red man”. When the hippies traveled overland from Europe to India and Nepal, they encountered Hindu saints and brought back teachers who introduced yoga, meditation, and mystic practices to the West. These ancient wisdom traditions have had a strong influence in creating a better understanding amongst our different cultures. As Mark Twain once said: “Travel is fatal to bigotry, prejudice and narrow mindedness”.

I photograph in both color and black and white. I prefer black and white for people as it removes the distraction of color, inviting the viewer to see the human spirit and emotional content within the image. However, color is closer to the reality we experience through our vision, and it allows the viewer to imagine being there. There is also a series of colorized images. Starting with a black and white image, I carefully select areas to add a color and then print them on watercolor paper to enhance the visual effect. All photographs are printed and matted with archival materials.

I am often asked how I can capture genuine moments of human emotion when photographing. I do this by always approaching people with respect, sensitivity, and integrity. This is possible even without a common language as 90% of communication is nonverbal. Once this is established either through eye contact, body language or words, then I proceed to pick up my camera. It is my hope that my photographs create a sense of common humanity and foster understanding and acceptance amongst all the tribes of the human family.

Purchase a Print and Support the Church

Please get in touch with me through email or telephone to purchase a print. 20% of the sale price will be donated to the Unitarian Church. I can either replace the image with another so you can take the print home, or you can pick up the print at the end of the exhibition. Email: craig@eaglevisions.net Phone: 831 238-5320

Upcoming Events

Exhibition at the Marjorie Evans Gallery: Magic & Mystery in Latin America – Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month
Opening: Friday September 22 nd 5 to 7 PM at the Sunset Center. Images from Mexico, Ecuador & Cuba.
2023 Arts Habitat’s Artist Studio Tour: Weekends of Sept.30/Oct. 1 & Oct 7/8 10 AM to 5 PM
Come and see the studio and lots more imagery at 80 Laurel Drive, Carmel Valley, CA